Hundreds of people have gathered by Christchurch’s Bridge of Remembrance to show support for the trans community in the wake of anti-transgender activist Posie Parker’s brief visit to Aotearoa. Bubbles filled the air against a backdrop of trans rights flags and hundreds of signs of support for the LGBTQIA+ community, including a surfboard spray painted with “I drop in on TERFs” and a simple yet effective “Expelliamus Posie Parker”.
Police formed a barrier between the crowd and a small group of around 10 people from Destiny Church’s “Man Up” who gathered on the bridge in counter protest. A speaker representing the group was unable to be heard over the crowd, who erupted in a chant of “no more hate, no more hate” and “go home TERFs, go home TERFs” whenever he tried to speak. Silenced by the noise, he resorted to a sheepish shaka as the entire crowd turned their backs on him.
The protest then moved up Cashel Mall in a colourful and peaceful celebration – complete with Lady Gaga on the soundsystem and a huge cheer for the smiley tram driver who ambled his tram through the crowd while giving a big thumbs up in support. Back at the bridge of remembrance, the counter protest was joined by National Front founder Kyle Chapman. But with hundreds of pro trans activists cheering, dancing and laughing in the exact opposite direction, nobody seemed to take any notice.
The crowd has since thinned out, but a police presence remains between the remaining pro trans supporters and the counter protestors, who continue to attempt to speak over the chant of “no more hate, no more hate.” The tram also continues to periodically make its way through the crowd, inspiring the charming chant “trams for trans, trams for trans”.
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